Feedback From Your Directs - What To Say - Part 1

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • What do I say when my directs give me feedback?
  • Can I say no to feedback from my directs?
  • Can I give my directs negative feedback for giving me feedback?

This guidance tells you what to say when your directs say, "Can I give YOU some feedback?"

It happened to Mark recently. He was teaching the feedback model to a bunch of CEOs. He had made it clear the MT feedback model was only for managers to directs. He finishes the talk, and the emcee says, in front of everybody, "Can I give YOU some feedback?" And, of course, then he mangles the model. At least it wasn't negative feedback in front of a hundred CEOs.

What do you do when one of your directs turns the feedback model on its head? You know it's wrong. So, can you say no? And the answer is yes, sort of, sometimes, but not really.

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Wish you had video...

of the emcee's non-feedback moment and Mark's response. :-)

Thanks for another helpful 'cast, gentlemen.

other input models?

So directs don't give (Manager Tools) Feedback to their bosses.  And we don't give Feedback to peers.  Have you done podcasts on other input (feedback) models that ARE appropriate to use in these other situations? 

Do we wait until people ask for our input - but that often is of the form of "how did my presentation go?"  

Update: Just found a nice discussion of this topic on the Forum.  One of the last comments summarizes the topic pretty well.  Short form: directs should always frame the discussion in ways that will help _themselves_ improve, rather than "fixing" the manger.  I suspect the same thing would apply to peers.

I get a lot of unsolicited feedback from directs

it is usually in the form of:

A) Can I give you some feedback? You always do XYZ and you should not do that.

My reaction is usually to not respond.


B) You need to be more decisive...


C) You always blah blah blah


D) Bob always does X


And the feedback is never followed with any suggestions so even if it was solicited it is pretty useless.

and on occasion

E) I wish you would not give us more work to do. We have quite enough.


In any case, it usually comes across as managing up.

Even worse is when they try to delegate up.

One wants to send them packing, but once you figure out the MO of each direct you realize it is their personality and they simply need some course correction.

So the challenge is learning how to turn these unsolicited comments into something useful for the direct. Hoping the podcast will illuminate how.